How I Almost Lost My Hair At 24

At 24 years old, I was going bald….Yes, you read that right, I was balding like a middle aged male for the better part of 2019 into 2020! 

My hair was falling out in chunks and clumps and slowly shining down to nothing. At it’s worst, I could barely pull it in a pony tail it was so thin and weak. As someone who has always had super thick, full and voluptuous hair and as a child was embarrassed about how curly and big my hair was the thought of my hair thinning and falling out at 24 was absolutely heinous to me. I had never experienced this type of hair loss before and I unfortunately barely noticed that throughout 2019 my hair had been slowly thinning down to about 30% of its original thickness and fullness.

Hair loss is one of the most difficult, uncomfortable and heartbreaking medical conditions that many women, especially younger ones, experience and yet it is rarely talked about. I have been hesitant to share this publicly but over the last 3 months I have been on a tough journey to re grow my hair back to its natural thickness and fullness after experiencing extreme hairless over the course of 12 months. 

My journey to re grow my hair and confront my balding head began in December of 2019 when I was visiting family in New York. My mother distinctly mentioned on numerous occasions over the weekend that my hair looked, dead, thin and like it was falling out in clumps and buckets by the day. I was shocked to say the lease and super offended she would say such a thing. I self consciously pulled and picked at my hair and feverishly stayed up late looking at old photos of me to see if she was right. 

Was my hair thinning? Was I going bald at 24 years old? The hard truth was yes. After living in fear and denial for roughly 2 months after that trip home I decided to seek help from a medical professional. After many blood tests and consulting my both my primary care doctor and OB/GYN the results were in. The doctors told me that I was likely balding due an adverse hormonal response as a result of my contraceptive arm implant, Nexplanon, coupled with extreme lifestyle stress and a history of under eating and overtraining. 

Next I had to choose, did I want to risk removal and switch to a new contraceptive method in hopes of that solving the problem in addition to making some serious lifestyle changes to reduce my bodily stress levels or did I want to continue to lose all of my hair until there was none left. Two years ago this choice would have crippled me. Two years ago choosing to take a step back from high intensity exercise and letting go of my very lean physique and rigorous diet would have put me in a downward spiral mentally. Not this time! 

As of March 2020, right as the world tossed me a blessing with home lock down and a shut down Crossfit box, I began my journey to help re-grow my hair and heal my over stressed body. I realized over the course of home lockdown, just how much stress I was putting my body under everyday, from doing Crossfit 3-4 times a week and CorePower Yoga Sculpt once a week on top of work, and my social life I was beating myself into the ground. This stress coupled with my history of under eating and overtraining and starving myself lean was causing my body to feel unsafe and therefor I was not in a place to be able to handle the type of hormones in my arm implant. It wasn’t until I was forced to take a step back that I finally saw the damage I was doing to my body. Home lockdown was one of the best things that could have happened to me and is one of the biggest factors that contributed to my rapid hair re-growth. 

This was a tough journey and it took many of taking 8 vitamins a day, not blowdrying my hair everyday and a lot of dedication to the process of healing, but it paid off tenfold. By taking a break from Crossfit style training, following a rigorous vitamin plan, removing my Nexplanon/switching to combination pills and putting on a few pounds I successfully grew my hair back to its natural thickness. Since starting this journey I have cut and re-grown my hair by 3 strong inches and probably gained a little over 5 pounds a 1-2% body fat. 

Two of my biggest take-aways from this whole experience were how to respect, and not treat my body like trash in pursuit of short term aesthetic goals and to be grateful for all of things my body allows me to do. Was it hard to watch my body change and become a bit softer, hell yes. Do I have any regrets? Absolutely none, it took a lot of mental and inner work for me to be able to put my health and wellbeing before my fitness goals and that to me is priceless. 

For reference, a few of the products that really aided in my re-growth process were…

Stay tuned for more health related content coming soon, and if you or someone else are struggling with hair loss do not hesitate to shoot me a message on Instagram! 

Here is recent photo since growing my hair back

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